Mother, 30, got pregnant TWICE in a week after doctors claimed she had just a 5% chance


A mother who ‘gave up’ trying for more children after being told she only had a five per cent chance of conceiving has revealed she fell pregnant twice in the space of a week.

Alina Luca, from Beckton, East London, had always dreamed of having a big family but her chances were hindered by an underactive thyroid.

After two years of attempting to have a second child with partner Rick Carmea, she decided to give up.

But a month later, the 30-year-old found out she was pregnant.

During her 12-week scan, Ms Luca discovered she was actually expecting two babies — which doctors claimed had been conceived a week apart. 

The incredibly rare phenomenon, known scientifically as superfetation, occurs when a second pregnancy occurs just days or weeks after the first. However, babies born this way are not officially twins.

Ms Luca believes her experience was nothing short of a ‘miracle’, given she’d prayed for just one more child.

Daughters Ellie and Millie Carmea were born in March.

Alina Luca (pictured with her two newborn daughters), from East London, had always dreamed of having a big family but her chances were hindered by an underactive thyroid

A striking photo shows the full-time mother-of-three's belly prominently stretched while pregnant with the duo

A striking photo shows the full-time mother-of-three’s belly prominently stretched while pregnant with the duo

Ms Luca believes her experience was nothing short of a 'miracle' given she'd prayed for just one more child and eventually gave birth to her two daughters Ellie and Millie Carmea in March

Ms Luca believes her experience was nothing short of a ‘miracle’ given she’d prayed for just one more child and eventually gave birth to her two daughters Ellie and Millie Carmea in March

After two years of trying for a second child with partner Rick Carmea (pictured), she decided to give up. But a month later, the 30-year-old found out she was pregnant and during her 12-week scan discovered she was actually expecting two babies — that had been conceived a week apart

After two years of trying for a second child with partner Rick Carmea (pictured), she decided to give up. But a month later, the 30-year-old found out she was pregnant and during her 12-week scan discovered she was actually expecting two babies — that had been conceived a week apart

WHAT IS SUPERFETATION? THE RARE CONDITION THAT CAUSES A PREGNANT WOMEN TO CONCEIVE

Superfetation is the rare phenomenon when a woman becomes pregnant with another child while already pregnant.

This occurs when an egg is fertilised by sperm and implants itself in the womb for a second time just days or weeks after the process happened for the first time.

It is extremely rare, with only a few cases ever reported in medical literature – in the UK, Italy and Canada.

Hormonal changes during pregnancy usually block three key processes required to become pregnant again: 

  1. Ovulation: Body stops releasing eggs from the ovaries during the menstrual cycle 
  2.  Fertilisation: Body creates a mucus barrier in the cervix that blocks sperm from fertilising any extra eggs that are released 
  3. Implantation: The hormones required for a fertilised egg to stick to the womb are not usually released when a woman is already pregnant

The tiny chance of these three processes happening in one person means almost all superfetation cases recorded have been in women undergoing in vitro fertilisation (IVF). 

During the treatment, a fertilised egg is transferred into a woman’s womb. Superfetation can occur if a woman is already pregnant, or becomes pregnant naturally in the days or weeks after this treatment. 

It is hard to diagnose, as the presence of two foetuses in the womb is usually assumed to be twins. The main feature of superfetation is the two foetuses growing at different rates.  

But there are more common reasons for babies growing at different rates. 

Superfetation can increase the risk of complications for the younger baby, as it is at higher risk of being born prematurely.

Babies born through superfetation are often considered twins, as they are often born on the same day. However, they are not officially twins. 

Twins are either identical — when a single egg splits in two after being fertilised — or non-identical, when two separate eggs are released and fertilised by different sperm and implanted into the womb.

Superfetation occurs when an egg is fertilised by sperm and implants itself in the womb for a second time, just days or weeks after the process happened for the first time.

It is extremely rare, with only a few cases ever reported in medical literature. Doctors have identified superfetation in the UK, Italy and Canada.

Superfetation is tricky to diagnose, as the presence of two foetuses in the womb is usually assumed to be twins. 

The main feature of superfetation is the two foetuses are growing at different rates. 

Babies born through superfetation are often considered twins, as they are often born on the same day. However, they are not officially twins. 

Twins are either identical — when a single egg splits in two after being fertilised — or non-identical, when two separate eggs are released from an ovary at the same time, are fertilised by different sperm and implanted into the womb.

Ms Luca said: ‘I got pregnant while I was already pregnant. I didn’t think it was possible.

‘I asked the doctor “are you serious? How can this be possible to get pregnant when you are pregnant already?”

‘They said that it was very rare but it happens. We found out they were conceived one week apart because one of them was smaller on the scan.

‘It’s a miracle that this happened to me.

She added: ‘We prayed for one baby and said “if it doesn’t happen we can’t do anything about it”, and then this happened after one month [of stopping to try] I found out I was pregnant. It was a big shock for us.

‘After I processed it and did some research I was really in shock and was like ‘wow, it really did happen and it really did happen to me’. 

‘It’s really amazing.’

Ms Luca, who was already mother to a nine-year-old girl, found out she was expecting again last August.

She said: ‘I always wanted a big family. I couldn’t get pregnant for two years and I gave up.

‘They told me I had a five to ten percent chance of getting pregnant because I have hypothyroidism.’

The condition, also known as an underactive thyroid, means the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones and causes irregular periods, making it difficult to conceive. 

Ms Luca added: ‘Last year I said I’d give up because I was upset and I was thinking there was no point trying again and if it will happen, it will happen.

‘And after one month I found out I was pregnant. It was funny. I cried tears of joy because I was so happy.

‘I called my sister and asked her to look at the pregnancy test to see if it was positive because I thought I was dreaming.’

Ms Luca gave birth to her two daughters on March 15.

Ms Luca gave birth to her two daughters on March 15. The pair were delivered at 35 weeks with Millie weighing 4lbs 5oz — who was conceived first — and Ellie following one minute later at 4lbs 4oz. The full-time-mum has since set up an Instagram page in a bid to raise awareness of superfetation pregnancies

Ms Luca gave birth to her two daughters on March 15. The pair were delivered at 35 weeks with Millie weighing 4lbs 5oz — who was conceived first — and Ellie following one minute later at 4lbs 4oz. The full-time-mum has since set up an Instagram page in a bid to raise awareness of superfetation pregnancies

Ms Luca said: 'The pregnancy was very hard and painful. I thought my back would break because my belly was so big'

Ms Luca said: ‘The pregnancy was very hard and painful. I thought my back would break because my belly was so big’

She said: 'I'm small. My skin was so stretched and I had so many marks and was thinking my belly would explode soon. I was over the moon to hold them for the first time, it was amazing to be honest'

She said: ‘I’m small. My skin was so stretched and I had so many marks and was thinking my belly would explode soon. I was over the moon to hold them for the first time, it was amazing to be honest’

Ms Luca: 'You can see everything like double — not just because of having two babies, but everything — your emotions and you're more sensitive. When I tell people [my story] they look at me and they think that I'm crazy and wonder how it was possible. If someone told me before [my experience], I think I'd be the same'

Ms Luca: ‘You can see everything like double — not just because of having two babies, but everything — your emotions and you’re more sensitive. When I tell people [my story] they look at me and they think that I’m crazy and wonder how it was possible. If someone told me before [my experience], I think I’d be the same’

The pair were delivered at 35 weeks with Millie weighing 4lbs 5oz, and Ellie following one minute later at 4lbs 4oz.

The full-time mother has since set up an Instagram page in a bid to raise awareness of superfetation pregnancies.

Ms Luca said: ‘The pregnancy was very hard and painful. I thought my back would break because my belly was so big.

‘I’m small. My skin was so stretched and I had so many marks and was thinking my belly would explode soon.

‘I was over the moon to hold them for the first time, it was amazing to be honest.

‘You can see everything like double — not just because of having two babies, but everything — your emotions and you’re more sensitive.

‘When I tell people [my story] they look at me and they think that I’m crazy and wonder how it was possible.

‘If someone told me before [my experience], I think I’d be the same.’ 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk